The best thing about running a blog is coming across stuff you didn’t hear back in the day. So thanks Mike for sharing a “new” 80’s/90’s band/ project , Voice Farm were from San Francisco, California and remind me of a synth version of the B-52’s. Vocalist Charly Brown and sound designer Myke Reilly actually met in 1980 and made witty comment about popular culture through use of samples and synths. A dancier Negativland!
Voice Farm Featuring The Super E.Q. Team – Hey Freethinker (US 12″)
From 1991 and a jaunty slice of synthpop. Featuring the “Super E.Q. Team” (various sampled and treated voices) The actual samples of the day were not too overly used. Sounds like Jan Hammer in places but weird and wacky enough. B-side “Follow The Lonely” is a Stax soul tribute with funk and sampled orchestra with Bryan Ferry style vocals.
Morgan Creek Records – 2959-26006-1
|A1||Hey Freethinker (Extended Dance Version)||7:49|
|A2||Hey Freethinker (Album Version)||5:49|
|B1||Hey Freethinker (Dub Version)||4:50|
|B2||Follow The Lonely||3:45|
Voice Farm – Free Love (US Remix)
Risque themes are investigated here with the playful 12″ from 1991. Fun to be had in all the mixes. Catchy as a big catchy thing with the worryingly titled “Brutal Sexuality Mix” being the choice cut. I’m getting a Bronski Beat vibe! Gotta love the commercial dance vibe of the “New York Mix” with extra keyboards from Peter Schwartz and clean production by The Hit Factories, Michael Hutchinson.
Morgan Creek Records – MCPRO 0001-1
|A1||Free Love (New York Mix)||7:14|
|A2||Free Love (Radio Edit)||3:49|
|B1||Free Love (Brutal Sexuality Mix)||7:45|
|B2||Free Love (Dub Mix)||5:27|
Voice Farm – Johnny Belinda (US 12″)
Last offering is this earlier release from 1987 on the legendary Ralph Records (where Yello first released stuff) More primitive sounding and experimental and my current favourite, all about a weekend Transvestite. Remixed by Sir Arthur who did some Skinny Puppy stuff around the same time. The instrumental version has some great sounds and spacey layers. The B-side “Super EQ Team” is an hypnotic instrumental with more random samples. Definitely ahead of their time, love it!
NEW LINK 2017
Ralph Records – RR 87561
A1 –Johnny Belinda: Extended Dance Mix –6:48
A2 –Johnny Belinda: Instrumental –7:27
B – Super EQ Team: Extended Dance Mix – 7:22
Pure 80’s Pop now from a tune that passed me by back in the day. Pseudo synthpop sounding a tad commercial for these old ears but it does still have a synth hook. (Dollar, Bucks Fizz via Buggles anyone ?) Can’t believe they were from the UK and this particular track was an entry for Song For Europe in 1982! (Bardo won it!) Featuring on the film soundtrack for “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” in 1985, the US label Jive re-released this collection of original and new remixes in 1989. The “G.Z.Edit” is a the pick of the original mixes. The B-side “At The Top (All The Way St. Tropez)” is included, all early 80’s New Wave shiny-ness, with the theme of fashion and glamour. (EEEEEK those Lyrics!)
Fronted by Martin Page (Ex- Tight Fit who did “The Lion Sleeps Tonight and looking like Timmy Mallet’s best mate via LazyTown on the video) and Brian Fairweather (who later did a lot with Earth,Wind & Fire). With Trevor Thornton (who went on to drum with Prog Rockers, Asia) and keyboard player, Chris Richardson. On the 7 track, Maxi 12” we get a long acid tinged remix (Dance Till You Drop) , a weird blend of old style guitar new wave and an acid bassline remixed Paul Schroeder and Mark Sayfritz. American DJ, Mr Lee, gives it a bit of piano house workover with his remixes, the instrumental being really Lee’s own house track, pumping for 1989. Thanks Mike B!
Jive – 1221-1-JD
|A1||Dancing In Heaven (Orbital Be Bop) (Extended Remix)||6:06|
|A2||Dancing In Heaven (Orbital Be Bop) (Dance Til You Drop Mix)||9:14|
|A3||Dancing In Heaven (Orbital Be Bop) (G.Z. Edit)||4:30|
|B1||Dancing In Heaven (Orbital Be Bop) (Long 7″ Edit)||2:52|
|B2||Dancing In Heaven (Orbital Be Bop) (House Dub Mix)||4:41|
|B3||Dancing In Heaven (Orbital Be Bop) (Get Funky Instrumental)||3:53|
|B4||At The Top (All The Way To St. Tropez)||3:35|
From 1987 and Erasure had released just 2 albums and were really at the start of their illustrious career. But they managed to release this album of remixes and alternative versions as a double album, with both discs running at 45 rpm. Great packaging from the Me Company and getting an orchestra in for 3 tracks (which are the highlights) proved how much Daniel Miller and Mute had faith in the duo. They even get the legendary Little Louie Vega to do some remixes, his remix of “Hideaway” is another highlight.
Mute – L. STUMM 35
|A1||Sometimes (Erasure And Flood Mix)|
|A2||It Doesn’t Have To Be (Mix By Pascal Gabriel)|
|B3||Victim Of Love (Little Louie Vega Mix)|
|B4||Leave Me To Bleed (Vince Clarke/Eric Radcliffe Mix)|
|C5||Hideaway (Little Louie Vega Mix)|
|C6||Don’t Dance (Daniel Miller/Flood Mix)|
|D7||If I Could (Orchestral Arr. & Thanks To Andrew Poppy)|
|D8||Spiralling (Orchestral Arr. & Thanks To Andrew Poppy)|
|D9||My Heart…So Blue (Orchestral Arr. & Thanks To Andrew Poppy)|
From 1986 and the last real successful single from Culture Club, as Boy George’s heroin addiction took over. This see’s second singer, Helen Terry, provide soulful backing vocals to the now dance/synthetic sound that Culture Club had evolved into, with Arif Mardin on production duties. It reminds me of early ZTT stuff, very clean production. The B-side is quality as well with a bit of a rare remix and a non album track and a definite swansong. Two very decent 12″ mixes.
Virgin – VS 861-12
|A||God Thank You Woman (Extended Version)|
|B||From Luxury To Heartache (It’s All Her Fault – Mix)|
Again more Mike stuff (I’ll post some of my own at the weekend !) and some Aussie New Wave from 1983. So expect electronic drums and plenty of 80’s cliche remix tricks. Not a bad track at all to be honest with a great horn-tinged chorus, synthy funk pop! It was produced by David Kershanbaum and remixed by James Barton. “Hunting & Haunted (Instrumental)” is a very pleasant mix of 80’s guitar and synth – I’m going to have to check out some of their early albums!
The band were formed in Melbourne, Australia in 1983. Scott Carne on lead vocals, Bruce Curnow on drums, Greg Dorman on lead guitar, Craig Harnath on bass guitar, and Greg Woodhead on keyboards. This was only their second release.
American major label, Sire, picked up the track again in 1986 and vamped it up for a re-release with remix treatment by Freddy Bastone who gives it more electronic bass and space. Still prefer the original 12″ mix although the Dub Mix on the US 12″ is very funky!
Both are here in one Zipfile
White Label Records – X-13147
A –Bitter Desire (Kitchen Mix) –5:48
B1 –Bitter Desire (Instrumental) –3:45
B2 –Hunting & Haunting (Instrumental) –3:42
Sire – 0-20554
|A1||Bitter Desire (Club Mix)||5:56|
|A2||Bitter Desire (Edit)||3:45|
|B1||Bitter Desire (Dub)||6:30|
|B2||Not The Way||2:30|
Mike got me excited with this little offering because I thought I had heard, and got most, of Bill Nelson’s many releases. I quick look on Discogs and I was way out! This was when Nelson was signed to a semi-major, Portrait Records in the late 80’s where he put out a very commercial album, “Getting Across The Holy Ghost – On A Blue Wing” which had a lot of mystical, quasi religious symbolism and was totally ignored by the record buying public. Co-produced by Steve Nye the album saw Nelson make great use of all the studio tricks and it still doesn’t sound like it was from 1986. A very young Justin Strauss and Murray Elias provided the remixes. The “Popstand Remix” keeping true to the album version with a different drum pattern. Definite Japan influences with brother Ian Nelson providing some excellent saxophone.
Portrait – RAS 2574
A- Because Of You (Popstand Remix)-7:37
B1- Because Of You (Nailed To The Dub Version)-7:40
B2- Because Of You (Dubbed To The Drums Version)-6:06
You wait for one Space Monkey and two come along in quick succession !(Thanks Mike) From the one man band that was Paul Goodchild (plus a few session musicians) this was his final single release from 1986. Cutting edge sounds for the time and that nice blend of guitar and synth. The “Funk Mix” is the best way in with its synth bass. There is a very experimental 10 min + dub mix self produced and remixed under the guise of Paul X & The Space Tribe, great stuff for 80’s 12″ anoraks and included above with some band pics, thanks to the guy who put it together.
NEW LINK 2018
Inner Vision – IVST 11
|Only The Night (Extended Version)||5:30|
|Only The Night (Funk Remix)||3:42|
|Only The Night (Interplanetary Dub Mix)||10:20|
More shiny, synth rock by Mr. Charlie “Cheekbones” Sexton. From 1986 and the follow-up to his debut and quite a catchy little ditty, I’m getting a Beverly Hills Cop vibe about it, almost “Boys Of Summer.” with a heavy dose of INXS. I actually had the album “Pictures Of Pleasure” in my hand whilst in my usual second hand record shop just yesterday, I did pass up on it though. The Dub has the classic IIIIiiiiiiimpressed, vocal stutter slices, a fun listen and still maintains the full vocals. Steve Lillywhite having a bit of input on the Dub remix.
|A||Impressed (Mixed Impressions) (Extended Dance Remix)||6:25|
|B||Impressed (Wanna Bet Dub)||7:31|
The last of the SPK stuff (thanks Mike) and the slower paced “Flesh & Steel track from 1985. We have saxophone and bass within a more commercial sounding slice of synthpop (even the vocals are bearable!) Rather than all the metal banging of previous releases this is very Propaganda with more primitive sampling (gotta love those sampled choirs!) Both versions are a little less polished than the album version..
NEW LINK 2017
Elektra – 0-66905
A 1- Flesh And Steel (Extended Remix) – 5:30
B 1 Flesh And Steel (Edited Version)-4:00
Space Monkey ,for me, meant their debut “Can’t Stop Running”, their camp, synth pop debut, a forgotten gem that I do possess and have posted on one of my long lost blogs a while back. So thanks Mike for sharing some more Monkey stuff. First up we have a 1986 release. This was off their only album , “On The Bean” , produced by Adrian Lee (Toyah and Mike + Mechanics keyboardists) and remixed by Mark Kamins (New York DJ and discoverer of Madonna) Big 80’s drums and a rumbling, sequenced synth bassline and melodramatic vocals with plenty of cheesiness. Looking at the lavish vid lead singer and solo member, Paul Goodchild, resembles a young Ozzy Ozborne !
NEW LINK 2018!!
|A||One More Shot (Extended Version)||6:45|
|B||One More Shot (Dub Version)||4:50|